Parenting Tips For Moms

Parenting

Teaching your kids to appreciate everyone!

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  • March 14, 2021
  • MKB Team

Parenting becomes a real struggle if you are raising kids who are unappreciative. While sometimes thankfulness depends on developmental milestones, we can always work on certain things to help our children comprehend and express appreciation.

If your kids learn to appreciate everyone, they will mature into well-rounded, healthy adults with great interpersonal skills and pleasant personalities.

We often see parents deciding who their children’s friends should be. Sometimes, parents discourage their children from forging a friendship with someone who belongs to a poor family. Unfortunately, this does the child more harm than good and makes wealth rather than goodness a prerogative much early in life. Let children choose their own friends, and respect their judgement. Remember, no one is born rich or poor, and sometimes the knowledge a poor man possesses outweighs all the wealth of a rich man. Similarly, appreciation means much more than wealth. Try thanking your child for good work done by showering him/her with praise and on the other hand, give them some money. The smiles will be wider on the display of appreciation rather than gifts of money.

Just like everything else that we treasure in our lives, appreciation must be practiced. We must show children the way! If we expect them to learn to be thankful for the good things and wonderful people in our lives, we must do the same and also help them practice expressing that gratitude.

It is also important that children be taught that no job is big or small enough. In this world that is rapidly becoming gender equal, one must teach kids that there is nothing like jobs for boys and jobs for girls. So just like little boys must learn how to sew and clean the house, little girls must learn to fetch the groceries and work with tools. All jobs must be appreciated as the greatest shortfall of our society is that we tend to look down upon menial jobs, depending on domestic help. If children can be successfully taught to appreciate all types of jobs and chores, it will only lead to the betterment of society.

The Japanese were probably the earliest to realize that manners are essential to be a good human being and raise an appreciative child. That’s why Japanese pre-schoolers learn manners before anything else.

While teaching manners, remember that kids are sponges soaking in your words, mannerisms, action and attitudes. Use the fact to your advantage that they emulate the actions of parents and other adults by watching them. If you be grateful for what you possess, the same feeling will overflow on to your children. Remember, the behaviour that you display and expect your children to emulate is not restricted to them alone. If you expect your children to appreciate everyone, appreciate everyone yourself first, right from the vegetable vendor to the milkman to the fish seller to the newspaper vendor to the cable guy! Even that’s not everyone!    

Saying please and thank you more often than you do when you interact with kids is essential as well as doing the same with others. Good manners are simply ‘what we do in life’ and appreciation is also ‘who we are’, and not just ‘what we say or do’. It is a reflection of our overall personality.

A great way to teach appreciation to kids is to involve them when writing thank you cards for Diwali, Christmas or birthday gifts. Sometimes, even if you are not at home, a quick phone call to thank your child for doing something like helping Mother in her household chores can work wonders. The point is that you don’t have to be always physically present. It’s the thought that counts!

Children’s books are another great option to incorporate both manners and a sense of appreciation in children. Read to children from a young age and choose wisely from folk tales like the Jatakas and Fairy Tales to the Epics to Animal Tales. Everything that teaches moral values and other core values should find a place in your list. Books like ‘Say Please’ and ‘Say Thank You’ are fantastic for younger children.

Take care to avoid some of the common mistakes most parents make in an attempt to make their kids more appreciative. Sometimes, we tend to use approaches that might teach appreciation but have unintentional negative effects. So refrain from using any form of threats, flattery, coercion, comparisons or punishments. Children cannot be manipulated to feel grateful or show appreciation for what they have. It’s not desirable either that they display appreciation in an attempt to please you. This has to come naturally and be formed in their little hearts so that it can be shaped into a lifelong habit.

 

Did you enjoy reading this article? How do you think one can teach kids to appreciate everyone? Write to us and let us know your views. We’d love to hear more from you.

 

Q&A

You ask and we answer!

 

How do you teach a spoiled child appreciation?

Ineyeta Khan, Dubai.

4 Tips to Teach You How to Unspoil a Child

  • Stop buying unnecessary things for your child.
  • Teach your children to take care of their things.
  • Teach them to buy things for themselves.
  • Have your child keep a list of things that he wants and how much it costs.

 

How do you raise a grateful child in an entitled World?

Nidhi Bhatnagar, London.

Here are 7 Ways to Raise Grateful Kids in an Entitled World:

  • Give them chores.
  • Give them plenty of opportunities to share.
  • Limit their extracurricular activities.
  • Let them contribute financially from their pocket money.
  • Limit gifts.
  • Travel as a family.
  • Name your blessings.

 

 

How do I make my child more grateful?

Lipika Chatterjee, Kolkata.

  • Say “Thank you.” Whether you thank the clerk at the store or you thank your child for clearing the table, make sure you're thanking people often.
  • Talk about gratitude. Make it a point to share what you're grateful for.
  • Express gratitude.

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